Over the course of the pandemic, home was very much where the heart was forced to stay, and as a result of multiple lockdowns, house renovations have steadily become Britain’s favourite pastime.
Using this as an opportunity to improve their surroundings and create more internal differentiation, some 48% of Brits are said to have taken part in home restorations during lockdown with home offices, built-in gyms, and improving the overall aesthetic of a property taking the lead.
In new national research by Powered Now the total spent by British consumers on home improvements is estimated to have amounted to £110.3bn, signalling an increase in expenditure by 29.7%. The research also highlights that Brits have spent an average of £2,011 per person on home refurbishments, while the UK property market has witnessed a 10.9% rise in average property value, it is yet to be established if this is due to the extensive home renovations, or an overcrowded housing market.
Powered Now’s study has also dissected the exact home improvement projects that Brits have undertaken in the past year, ranging from traditional kitchen replacements, to building home-gyms in a time of commercial closure. The research found that 1.5 million Brits had hired a tradesperson to build an outhouse, while a further 818,000 commissioned tradespeople to build an extension to their homes.
According to independent research by Checkatrade, the most common purposes for home renovations over the lockdown period were for Shed Offices, Home Cinemas and Snugs. Due to periods of prolonged isolation, home comforts were clearly the key for many Brits to battling the difficulties of isolation. This was further highlighted through Powered Now’s research that uncovered that home aesthetics had a great importance to Brits, with over 5 million of us employing painters and decorators in the past year.
- Brits spent £110.3bn on home improvements over the course of the pandemic
- 23% of Brits (5,055,000) employed painters and decorators
- 19% of Brits (4,177,000) employed a tradesperson for wiring and electrics job
- 15% of Brits (3,229,000) employed a tradesperson for a bathroom improvement/renovation
- 14% of Brits (3,115,000) had a landscaping project during lockdown
- 14% of Brits (2,936,000) had undertaken a roofing job
- 13% of Brits (2,765,000) had employed a tradesperson for a kitchen replacement/renovation
- 7% of Brits (1,513,000)had hired a tradesperson to build an outhouse/shed
- 4% of Brits (818,000) had a tradesperson/builder for an extension
- 3% of the UK (696,000) had a home gym installed by a tradesperson
Ben Dyer, CEO of Powered Now, discusses how the last year of turbocharged spending has affected the trades: “The news that consumer spending is through the roof directly correlates from what we have seen on the ground. We have witnessed tradespeople experiencing their highest client demand ever during the course of 2020, and these figures are very much in line with what we actually would have expected. If you look to the hardware retailers that were allowed to remain open when other non-essential retail wasn’t, they have performed so incredibly, further indicating the desire people have had for home improvements.
“Of course, there are other factors too. The stamp duty holiday has had a huge trickle down impact for the rest of the trades. Whether it be people looking to renovate after their home moves, or potential sellers giving a new lick of paint to try and squeeze any additional value to their house, tradespeople have been inundated as a result. Despite the initial lockdown bringing the industry to a standstill, the economic bounce-back has been quite remarkable.”